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Volvo creates U.S. and Canada division; Gustafsson will step down

Volvo creates U.S. and Canada division; Gustafsson will step down

Volvo Cars is reorganizing its Americas organization and spinning the U.S. and Canada markets into a different system.

Anders Gustafsson, 54, head of Volvo Cars Americas and CEO of Volvo Car USA, will quit his obligations March 1, 3 individuals informed on the matter informed Automotive News.

Michael Cottone, a 21- year Volvo veteran and Western Region vice president, will take control of the leading task in the U.S. and Canada. Cottone, 43, will report to a Volvo Cars business executive, not to CEO Jim Rowan.

It’s uncertain if Gustafsson prepares to continue with Volvo or go back to Sweden.

Volvo Car USA verified the reorganization to Automotive News.

” To support and guarantee a strong concentrate on Volvo Cars’ enthusiastic objectives for development, complete electrification and an omnichannel consumer experience, the Americas area structure will develop, developing a devoted company for the USA & & Canada,” a representative stated in an e-mail.

Gustafsson’s exit amazed Volvo’s sellers, who valued the executive’s straight-shooter method.

” The dealerships are ill about it; they do not comprehend it,” a dealership stated. “In your life time, you encounter extremely couple of charming leaders that can lead and provide, and [Gustafsson] is among them.”

Cottone’s elevation comes at a vital point for business.

As Volvo rotates to an all-electric brand name by 2030 and try outs a brand-new sales design, Cottone deals with a dealership network still determining what the brand-new method implies for their service.

The Swedish car manufacturer has actually set out a method to offer battery-powered designs online through volvocars.com and dealership sites– a possibility that has actually made some merchants anxious.

While the pandemic and supply scarcities have actually benefited merchant margins, the brand-new year brings modification. Cottone and his group will need to browse financial headwinds as inflation and rates of interest bite into need for big-ticket high-end automobiles.

In 2021, Volvo Cars stated it prepared to offer its battery-electric automobiles through an online design and provide them to dealers instead of having sellers stock numerous brand-new vehicles.

Meanwhile, Cottone should perform on the brand name’s aggressive item rollout while preserving the brand name’s present market momentum.

Cottone started his profession with Volvo in 2001 and has actually held business, local and worldwide positions, consisting of brand name supervisor for the XC60 and item method management.

Cottone “comprehends the retail service,” stated a dealership who asked not to be recognized. “He is concentrated on the visitor experience and the client.”

But Cottone has huge shoes to fill.

” He has the prospective to be an excellent leader, however at that level, it’s a radical change,” the seller stated.

The modification at Volvo’s U.S. head office in Mahwah, N.J., comes amidst a management shuffle in Gothenburg.

Last year, Volvo Cars CEO Hakan Samuelsson retired, triggering a domino effect. Numerous Volvo veterans remained in contention for the CEO task. In a surprise relocation, the board selected Rowan, a previous Dyson leading executive, for the task.

Rowan has quickly reorganized his cabinet, calling 2 deputy CEOs and moving 4 of the 11 executives– consisting of Gustafsson– off the car manufacturer’s greatest management tier.

A source stated Gustafsson was provided among the deputy CEO functions however didn’t wish to go back to Sweden.

Meanwhile, one veteran Volvo officer– and one-time assumed front-runner to prosper Samuelsson for the CEO task– has actually stepped down. Henrik Green, who formerly functioned as CTO, revealed on LinkedIn previously this month that he is leaving the car manufacturer.

Gustafsson took control of the reins of the crucial U.S. market in 2017 at the dawn of a sales revival for Volvo. In his 5 years at the helm, Gustafsson supervised the opening of Volvo’s U.S. assembly plant and guided the brand name through the turmoil of the pandemic. The brand name’s U.S. yearly sales grew 25 percent under his watch.

” We like Mike and will support him, however there is no logical reason Anders is leaving,” a dealership stated.

Volvo and retail run in Gustafsson’s veins.

He has had a connection with the Volvo brand name considering that age 14, cleaning vehicles at the Volvo car dealership his household has actually run in southern Sweden for more than 4 years. Gustafsson, who had actually been Hertz Sweden CEO, signed up with Volvo in 2009, taking control of the car manufacturer’s Swedish market management.

Gustafsson’s retail background endeared him to the U.S. dealership network.

” The dealerships truly liked the person,” a seller stated. “Anders was entrenched and extremely appreciated in Sweden.”

But the relationship has actually been checked recently.

Following a dealership uprising over the online sales method, Gustafsson went on a six-city roadshow in April 2021 to guarantee dealerships they weren’t being marginalized.

Gustafsson likewise handled pushback on Volvo’s other retail experiment– its lorry membership program. Unlike lots of car manufacturers who deserted the sales design, Volvo adjusted its membership program, which continues to broaden into brand-new markets.


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